Front Burner

How humanity put 1 million species at risk of extinction

The Canadian co-author of the new UN report on extinction, Kai Chan, explains how the loss of one species can ripple out to affect an entire ecosystem in ways that we often don't realize until it's too late.
Orca mother J35, balancing her dead baby on her nose trying to keep it afloat on July 25, 2018. (Kelley Balcomb-Bartok)

The southern resident killer whale pod off the coast of British Columbia is just one example of the plant and animal species at risk of extinction, which could number as many as one million, according to a new UN report. Human activities such as farming, fishing and logging are to blame, as are pollution and global warming, the report says. Today on Front Burner, Kai Chan, a Canadian co-author of the global assessment report and a professor at the University of British Columbia explains how the loss of even one species of insect could have really important ripple effects.

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